General election 2024: The candidates standing in Swansea West

The constituencies for the Westminster general election are changing ahead of the vote. The Swansea West seat will now be made up of almost two thirds of what was Swansea East and two thirds of what was Swansea West.

The boundaries of all but one Welsh seat have changed ahead of the 2024 election, only Ynys Mon (the island of Anglesey) remains untouched, all others have seen changes which could impact the results on election night. You can read the background to the changes here.

Instead of 40 constituencies, there are now 32 in Wales and the idea behind it is to make all Westminster constituencies the same size. Using figures from electoral calculus, we can see how this constituency is changing as 66.1% of Swansea West and 61.6% of Swansea East are merged into one seat.

At the time the election was called, an investigation into allegations against Geraint Davies, who had been Labour MP since 2010, was ongoing.

Where does the constituency cover?

It includes Townhill, Uplands, Sketty, Landore, Morriston and the city centre.

You can also find your constituency by entering your postcode here:

What happened in the general election in 2019

Who is standing?

The list of candidates will be updated here as names are confirmed.

  • Torsten Bell (Labour)

  • Patrick Benham-Crosswell (Reform UK)

  • Gareth William Bromhall (Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition)

  • Peter Kenneth Jones (Green Party)

  • Michael Ely O'Carroll (Lib Dem)

  • Tara-Jane Sutcliffe (Conservatives)

  • Gwyn Samuel Williams (Plaid Cymru)

The candidates

All candidates are being asked the same questions, and their answers will be added here once received.

Torsten Bell - Labour

Torsten Bell, Labour candidate for Swansea West
Torsten Bell, Labour candidate for Swansea West

I was born into a family committed to social justice. My dad started out teaching at Swansea University, before spending decades working at Save the Children. I've continued the tradition, as an economist in the Treasury during the financial crisis and trustee of the Child Poverty Action Group.

Over the past decade, I've led the Resolution Foundation, a national economic research charity dedicated to improving the lives of working people through better jobs, affordable housing and a more equal country. I've successfully campaigned to raise wages and reduce poverty.

Further details: age 41, married with two children. Torsten is a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences, school governor, and an Honorary Professor at UCL. He has a weekly column in The Observer.

Name a policy you want to see become law if elected as an MP

The last Labour government improved the world of work, including by introducing the national minimum wage. But there is more to do to ensure people in Swansea have good, secure jobs. 1.2 million people are now on zero-hour contracts – that number has doubled over the past decade.

For too many workers these contracts leave them with insecure family finances, not knowing how much they will earn week to week. One in four workers on zero-hours contracts want longer hours than they get, and they earn less than people doing similar jobs on normal contracts: the pay penalty is almost £1 an hour or £1,000 a year. It’s time to ban exploitative zero-hour contracts by giving workers the right to a contract that reflects the actual hours they work.

What's the biggest issue facing Wales and what will you do to fix it?

Wages in Wales haven’t increased over the past 15 years. There is no bigger priority than getting our economy growing again, so that family living standards are rising rather than being put under ever greater strain. Rishi Sunak says the cost-of-living crisis is over, but the truth is we're all still struggling with it every day: it’s a disgrace that one in five children in Swansea are growing up in poverty.

We need to get this economy back on its feet, making sure that good, secure jobs are there for working people here in Swansea. And it’s time we started investing in our future, rather than just living off our past. Rishi Sunak has left us dependent on importing expensive foreign gas – instead Labour will invest in Wales and Swansea's green energy potential.

Who has been the best British Prime Minister and why?

Clement Attlee.

Patrick Benham-Crosswell - Reform UK

Patrick Benham-Crosswell, Reform UK candidate for Swansea West
Torsten Bell, Labour candidate for Swansea West -Credit:Labour Party

I was born in 1963, educated at Winchester College and then joined the Army. I studied mechanical engineering at UCL and then spend a blissful decade with the Queen's Dragoon Guards, a Welsh Cavalry regiment. The defence cuts at the end of the Cold War enforced a career change and I moved to the City and thence to a range of sectors including manufacturing, computer simulations, facilities management and finance.

As an entrepreneur I have built companies from scratch; I understand the pressures and challenges of small and growing business because I've been there. I have advised many companies and turned others round. I write a bit, think more and currently keep the wolf from the door by driving articulated lorries. I've long intended to move to South West Wales and have been a member of the Swansea Bay Business Club since 2017. I'm divorced with two adult children. My hobbies include walking, gardening and gliding.

Name a policy you want to see become law if elected as an MP

I would introduce an equivalent of the hugely successful US GI Bill, giving free university tuition to any Armed Forces veteran who had completed their term of service. This idea, which is Reform policy, would encourage more to join the Armed Forces and help keep them there. It would also broaden the experience base of undergraduates, which would benefit them all. (On the subject of benefiting university students, Reform will immediately abolish the interest on student loans, saving the average student around £3,000 a year).

What's the biggest issue facing Wales and what will you do to fix it?

The lunatic and impossible Net Zero aspiration was invented by Labour's Ed Miliband. Net Zero is driving the price of energy up which is destroying businesses. It directly contributed to the coking plant at Port Talbot being closed and the associated thousands of job losses. Household energy and business energy costs are rising.

Delivering Net Zero needs a Sizewell C a year (or equivalent) for 30 years – the UK hasn't commissioned a single one in 29 years (and counting). Covering some of the best agricultural land in the UK with solar panels, closing dairy farms, exporting jobs to China and exploiting Congolese child labour won't make a jot of difference to global emissions or the climate. Fixing it is simple, Reform will cancel Net Zero.

Who has been the best British Prime Minister and why?

Tricky. 25 years ago Tony Blair delivered two failed wars while promising things could only get better. Gordon Brown proved the opposite and David Cameron made them worse. On a whim (or out of spite) Theresa May imposed Net Zero without a vote. Boris expanded that folly, locked us up and trashed the economy. Liz Truss was a disaster and the best thing Rishi Sunak has done is to call the election.

To be fair, John Major laid the groundwork to end the Ulster Troubles (for which Blair took the credit) and gave us the cones hotline. Margaret Thatcher transformed the country from an economic basket case into a credible, solvent power, transforming the 1970s bust into a boom. She won the Falklands War and fought terrorism. Unfortunately she split the country, with help from the demented Arthur Scargill. However she saved us from the economic collapse bequeathed to her by Wilson, Heath and Callaghan. That makes her a flawed winner with very moderate competition.

Gareth Bromhall - Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition

Gareth Bromhall, Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition candidate for Swansea West
Patrick Benham-Crosswell, Reform UK candidate for Swansea West -Credit:Patrick Benham-Crosswell

I’m a 31 year old Sandfields resident, I have lived in the centre of Swansea, with my Fiancé for a decade, after moving here from Pembrokeshire. The child of two NHS nurses, I grew up with strong Socialist and Trade Union principles.

I left school at 17 and worked in the social care sector for several years before studying at Swansea University and graduating with a MSc in Autism and Related Conditions. Since I have worked across the public and private care sector, and currently work for the NHS in Swansea.

I am a workplace and Health and Safety Rep, as well as Secretary of Swansea Trades Council, with a seat on the TUC Cymru General Council.

I dedicate most of my spare time to community activism where I have been involved in building and leading NHS, Anti-racist, Anti-Austerity campaigns and most recently supporting the Campaigns to support steel workers in South Wales, and the ongoing slaughter in Gaza.

Name a policy you want to see become law if elected as an MP

In a word - Nationalisation. It’s not controversial, poll after poll show that the majority of the public support its implementation. Our infrastructure is crumbling and decades of privatisation and profiteering has seen our essential services and industries decimated.

What I want to see is the nationalisation - under democratic workers control and management of these vital assets. We need to nationalise utilities - to ensure cheap green energy, clean water and internet access for all.

We need to nationalise transport to ensure our communities are connected and travel is made affordable with services expanded to meet the needs of these communities. We need to nationalise Royal Mail and the rest of our collective assets sold off under neo-liberalism, and run these institutions that we rely on in every day life for the needs of us all.

And in South Wales, to protect the jobs - the well paid, unionised, highly skilled jobs - at Port Talbot, Llanwern and Trostre and these communities at large - we need to Nationalise the Steel Industry - take it off the capitalist wreckers, transition to green steel and ensure our for for steel industry and the communities that rely on it.

What's the biggest issue facing Wales and what will you do to fix it?

The crisis in our NHS is by far the biggest issue facing Wales, and it’s an issue that cannot be ignored. Decades of ideological underfunding and mismanagement have left the Welsh NHS on its knees.

Waiting lists have mounted up, A&E departments resemble war zones, our ambulances spend more time stuck outside our hospitals than attending patients and the dental system has completely collapsed, leaving whole communities in dentistry deserts without access to NHS provision.

The programme for fixing this is clear - we need investment in our NHS - investment to reverse decades of decline, to fully fund pay rises for staff, to improve recruitment and retention, to improve the crumbling estate and provide the modern and accessible hospitals and clinics and the complete re-nationalisation of everything privatised and outsourced, including dental and optician services.

This combined with a true national care service - taking all care into public ownership and integrating both institutions would solve so many issues that our disjointed and unequal services currently endure are essential to build an NHS to be proud of.

Who has been the best British Prime Minister and why?

Best prime minister for who? Margaret Thatcher was for the rich and powerful – the capitalist class that dominates our economy and society – but not for the working class! Labour governments, before Tony Blair created ‘New Labour’, at least had to look over their shoulder at what the trade unions and working-class communities wanted, which is why we got the NHS, council housing, free education, trade union rights, the welfare state – all the things, in fact, that have been under attack for the last 30-40 years. And will remain under attack by Keir Starmer’s ‘Labour’, who will follow Blair in putting the demands of the free market, capitalist system before peoples’ needs. That’s why we need a new party of the working class, based on socialist policies that can transform Britain – and the world!

Peter Kenneth Jones - Wales Green Party

I am 76, married to Patricia since 1979 with two adult children and two grandchildren, ages 8 and 12. Patricia is from Colombia in South America and holds dual UK/Colombian citizenship. I have a first-class honours degree in politics and international studies from the University of Southampton, awarded in 1969, and several subsequent years of political research experience.

My principal career has been in university management and administration at Reading and Leicester universities; during this time I was seconded to the UK Department of Education as a senior civil servant, where I helped to design and deliver the 1979/80 university research assessment exercise. The exercise provided information on research quality and hence where to distribute UK Government funds across the university system - very proud of my lead role in this.

Subsequently, I was appointed early in 2002 to the new post of Environment Policy Officer for RSPB Cymru in Cardiff, commuting daily by train from Swansea, which I continued until retirement in 2016. My principal role was to monitor, report upon and analyse the findings of international climate change science, including the periodic IPCC global assessment reports and their potential implications for wildlife, especially wild birds, in Wales.

In May 2017 I was elected to Swansea Council as the Labour Party member for the Sketty ward, a role I continued until 2022, when I did not seek re-election. During my five years on the council, I set up and chaired a new natural environment scrutiny panel, which monitored, commented on and advised the council concerning its wildlife obligations under the Welsh Government Environment and Wellbeing of Future Generations Acts. Using the authority of the panel, I instituted a formal nine-month inquiry into the council's management of its natural environment requirements, producing a report with 20 recommendations, nearly all of which were subsequently adopted. I also moved the council's motions on both the the climate and biodiversity emergencies.

In the summer of 2022, I resigned from my membership of the Labour Party, and very soon after joined the Green Party, which more closely expresses my beliefs and priorities. I am a rrustee for the Environment Centre in Swansea and was involved in the development of its ongoing Big Climate Leap project. I am also a member both of Friends of the Earth and the RSPB, and a governor of a local secondary comprehensive school.

Together with my wife, I am a director of Iberians and Latin Americans in Wales CIC, which Patricia set up and leads. We have been heavily involved in assisting with Latin American asylum seekers and refugees, including delivery of food from a local food bank. In my spare time, I am a keen gardener, with a focus on planting for insect and bird wildlife. I used to be an enthusiastic distance runner - six half-marathons and many more 10ks - but ageing knees have put a stop to this. I still walk a lot, though, and workout daily at home, having both a treadmill and a rowing machine. Very fit for my age!

Name a policy that you would like to see implemented

I am a strong advocate of electoral reform. The UK should scrap the totally undemocratic voting system of first past the post, and introduce some form of proportional representation, preferably in my view the single transferable vote, as practised very successfully in the Republic of Ireland. The UK is one of only two European countries that still uses first past the post, the other being that well-known ally of Putin's Russia, Belarus. The UK now has a multi-party system; first past the post only works for a two-party system, as in the US, and is an inheritance from 19th Century politics.

What is the biggest issue facing Wales and what will you do to fix it?

More inward investment in services that Wales can offer, including tourism and hospitality, but especially onshore wind and solar energy and, of course, tidal energy in the Severn estuary and off the north Wales coast. Wales has the capacity to become self-sufficient in energy and a net exporter of renewable energy to other parts of the UK. This will require a UK Government that is committed to green energy, which more Green MPs could help to deliver.

Who has been the best British Prime Minister and why?

Very easy to answer this - Clem Attlee, 1945 to 1951. The Labour Party took office in 1945 with a landslide majority in the House of Commons, and with a worked-out legislative programme to create what became the welfare state including, of course, the publicly-funded NHS, funded public services, and public ownership of various industries, including the mines and utilities. Ruined by successive Conservative privatisations.

Tara-Jane Sutcliffe - Conservative

Tara-Jane Sutcliffe, Conservative candidate for Swansea West
Gareth Bromhall, Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition candidate for Swansea West -Credit:Gareth Bromhall

My professional passions fall into two camps: our global environment on the one hand, and good governance and sound public financial management on the other. I’ve been fortunate to work across both - leading charities and public sector bodies, including heading up the Chevening Secretariat, the UK’s flagship programme of international scholarships, and for several years running a Cardiff-based international volunteering charity providing opportunities for young people across Wales.

I’ve lately been working in the policy space – with the Conservative Environment Network and prior to that with a centre-right foreign affairs and national security think tank. I also bring parliamentary experience having worked as an MP’s researcher and with elected representatives and officials across the UK Overseas Territories. I serve as a trustee of several environmental charities and also on a number of scrutiny panels. I started my career, however, as an archaeologist and maintain a love of our rich cultural heritage and historic landscapes across Wales and the UK.

Name a policy you want to see become law if elected as an MP

They’re not ‘sexy’ subjects and perhaps have less ‘retail’ appeal on the doorstep, but good governance and sound public financial management matter. They matter in and of themselves and perhaps more so for their value in building trust and confidence in our politicians. Given my commitment to both, for me the attraction of serving as a parliamentarian is actually less in introducing individual laws but rather in the broader scrutiny side of the role.

The opportunity to feed into strengthening the legislative process as a whole – to contribute to democracy, rule of law and human rights. Of which in the UK we can be so proud. It’s why I’m an international election observer (latterly deployed to the Netherlands) and likewise why I hope to go on to serve as a local magistrate. It also speaks to my core values. I’m a Conservative because I have a preference for individual freedom, choice, and responsibility, and as a result small and accountable government. So, I will always champion effective and efficient use of taxpayers’ money.

What's the biggest issue facing Wales and what will you do to fix it?

Our public services in Wales are in a terrible state - on almost every metric, worse than in England. The stats are especially shocking but we all have experience, ourselves, our family and members of our community. It’s a key motivation for why I’m standing as a Candidate and the number one issue on the doorstep.

But whether it's health, education or transport, on all of these matters the decisions are made here in Wales by Welsh Government – which for the past 25 years has been run by Labour. Time and again we see poor decision-making. Welsh Labour simply have the wrong priorities - committing some £32m to imposing the 20mph speed limit and an estimated £18m for 36 new Senedd members. Public money that frankly would be better spent on our NHS.

Meanwhile A&E departments are at breaking point – as we saw at Morriston with the ‘black alert’ called in April. So, I will continue to campaign to hold Welsh Labour to account to deliver better public services and better public financial management.

Who has been the best British Prime Minister and why?

This is a question about values, so Rishi Sunak gets my vote – as indeed he did in the leadership election amongst members in 2022. During Covid, as Chancellor and together with other members of the Cabinet, he made tough and not always popular decisions that sought to protect the most vulnerable and safeguard UK jobs and businesses.

That for me is the hallmark of leadership and speaks to the best of us, when we put national long-term interests above short-term political gains. So that is why we have seen the highest level of tax of any post-WWII government: because it was the right thing to do in the context of a once-in-a-hundred-year event that caused global shock.

However, since entering No. 10 and together with his team, the Prime Minister has worked hard and succeeded in driving national economic growth, reducing inflation and putting in place plans to lower personal taxes. And of course, it’s the continued success of which that is at stake in this election.